‘A Little History’ of the Kamloops Film Festival

The Kamloops Film Society (KFS) originally started in 1972, when film fans gathered to watch and discuss classic and current cinema. First known as Cariboo College Film Club, they neramed as Kamloops Film Society in 1994, under the Societies Act, and focused on three significant types of cinema – independent, classic and foreign – shown in weekly series that eventually became seasonal.

In the early years, the Society independently booked films with distributors and booking agents directly but in 1994 they entered the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) film circuit. Before the Kamloops Film Festival became a reality, in the early 1990’s, a PR officer, from the local ski resort Sun Peaks, approached the KFS with the idea of bringing the best of the Vancouver Film Festival to Kamloops.

Meanwhile, a Vancouver organization called ‘Moving Pictures’ headed by John Duppong, began a travelling film festival throughout the BC interior. In 1992, Duppong approached the KFS for support on Shadows on The Wall: The Meeting of the Waters Film Festival, an event held over three days in two separate venues on opposite sides of the city.

The partnership continued and, in 1996, the third edition of ‘Moving Pictures’ The Travelling Canadian Film Festival stopped in Kamloops for the first time, March 29-31, and included Canadian and French dramatic film released from 1990 to 1995 plus documentaries and short films. Three film and short film directors featured in the festival – Michael Gibson (Defy Gravity), Gary Burns (The Suburbanators) and James Genn (Direct Lines) – were invited to the special event Short Cuts & Long Shots, a workshop about getting started in filmmaking.

A year after, the Kamloops Film Society took up the role of ‘Moving Pictures’ and organized their own first KFS Film Festival. From 1997 to 2000, the first editions of the festival brought to Kamloops movies from Canada, United States, Belgium, Italy, United Kingdom and Spain. Directors such as Atom Egoyan (The Sweet Hereafter), Bruce Sweeney (Dirty) and Ryan Bonder (DayDrifit): producers like Rosamon Norbury (Better Than Chocolate) and actress Gabrielle Rose (The Five Senses) visited Kamloops, attended the showings and accepted Q&A periods.

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Vincent Moon c’est Creative Commons!

Profile of the independent filmmaker from Paris, the original creator of La Blogothèque’s Concert à Emporter (Take Away Shows).

Mathieu Saura, better known as Vincent Moon, is one of the greatest and more respected filmmakers you can find, nowadays, licensing his work under Creative Commons, allowing its use and remix for derivate works. His work is available for free on Internet, he is a nomade artist building an audience on social media and keeping his projects alive by donations (crowdfunding).

Early on his career – not using Creative Commons, yet – he became known adapting filmmaking style ‘cinema verité’ to document bands playing one or few songs off the stage, on acoustic, in streets, parks, flats… anywhere. This music video subgenre, that was known as ‘Concert à Emporter’, or Take Away Shows, started in La Blogothèque. The list of bands Moon’s lenses captured includes: Arcade Fire, Phoenix, REM, Sufjan Stevens, Andrew Bird, St. Vincent or Bon Iver.

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